Browse Month

October 2019

About Textured and Structured Cabinet Doors

Over the years structured and textured cabinet doors and drawers have become a common occurrence in modern kitchen and bathrooms. The lovely textures bring movement and depth to a bathroom or kitchen without being too loud.

In addition to structured and textured cabinets, contemporary style is also represented by cool colors, a relaxing atmosphere, stone surfaces, and elements inspired by nature. The ultimate goal is to combine a lovely ambiance and a beautiful appearance with practical functionality.

Building a nice 3/4 inch cabinet box that is sturdy enough to be dissembled and taken with you if you move houses is becoming standard in the European market. If you have a nice strong box, with high quality hardware from a company like Blum, and some nice structured and textured cabinet doors without handles. Then you have an excellent foundation for creating a very luxurious feeling kitchen (by without handles I mean with fingerpull doors or push doors with magnets).

In addition to structured and textured cabinets, some of the more popular finishes of today are gray oak, white lacquer, cedar, and stone. The finishing details and furniture are simple and use clean lines.

Cool tones are seeming to dominate a vast majority of modern kitchens. They have a very simple, contemporary appearance and can assist you in feeling calm & tranquil.

Clean cabinet lines can do wonders. One can design cabinets in a such a way that they become completely integrated with the wall. The employment of a tool such as textured cabinets gives one the ability to stay within the modern style.

Outdoor Gazebo

Excellent selection

The gazebo is an excellent alternative for a big, noisy and crowded city. You can enjoy the surroundings, read a book and quietly relax away from the noisy atmosphere. It can be used as your private hangout away from the crowd.

Besides the gazebo being a structure which is functional and aesthetic in appearance, the Gazebo can enhance the beauty of your yard or garden, increasing the value of the property.

Outdoor Gazebo Plans- selection

The gazebo is planned to facilitate standard sizes of ten to twelve feet size structures, usually most convenient for small gardens. A gazebo can also be chosen in a bigger size, if you so desire.

While selecting one make sure you have the complete details and size descriptions including the accessories like screws, nails, hinges and boards etc. multi-media options are also available at reasonable cost. The careful selection should be balanced and optimum deal.

For smaller families round shaped roof Gazebo and for a size of six or more square/rectangle shaped roof gazebo may be preferred. Unless you are an experienced fabricator and confident in fabricating Gazebo, the services of a consultant can be hired for the optimal and economic solution.

Guiding Factors for Building Your Gazebo

The shape, design and outlook of Gazebo are some of the important aspects while selecting it appropriately. It should neither be very small nor very large to fit for your needs in the yard or garden.

The durability of a gazebo also cannot be ignored and due care should be taken to select the material, strong roof and supporting structure is desirable for long lasting gazebos. Some of the other requirements, depending upon your budget would be a selection of curtains, decorations, screens, potted plants, lattice panels and windows, which would be an added feature to your Gazebo.

Durable and Cheapest Gazebo

For a durable, cheap, aesthetically designed and best gazebo, you should always compare the prices of various suppliers before finally placing an order for the Gazebo, which could be an Ideal Gazebo for you and your family. Once it arrives and you have it built, fun days are sure to follow.

Cleaning Stone Bricks in Home

It’s a no-brainer that you can always use soap and water to clean your walls or home fixtures that are made from bricks. Water can easily take away dust or other easy-to-remove dirt. In addition to water, detergent soap can help make sure that the area is cleaned well.

To more effectively remove dirt and other foreign objects that are present, you can make use of scrubs. Soft scrubs should be used if you are trying to avoid creating scratches on the bricks. Harder varieties may be for bricks that have too much dirt on them. These can be perfect for outdoor bricks.

However, there can be instances when using water with soap is not a viable solution. You can try and but it will take you too much time effort to get the dirt out of the structure. So, there are more potent ways that you can make use of.

For a better and more complete clean, you can make use of power washing. The pressure that will be used is enough to eliminate hard to remove stains. There are effects that you need to watch out with power washing though and these effects are not entirely good. One, it can easily cause the removal of fillings in between the stones or grouts.

Also, there is a risk that water can get into the small cracks that are present in the stone bricks after doing such procedure. This means that your structure is more susceptible to damage such as rains, snow, and even wind.

To reduce the possible damage, power washers and the pressure that they release can be reduced. Lower the PSI at the minimum level or at a level that the stains or dirt can already be removed. This ensures that only the top layers made up of dirt are the ones that will be removed and the layers that make up the bricks will not sustain any damage.

Power washing is recommended for areas such as water wall fountains that are made from stone bricks. The structure will be most probably covered with algae which can make manual cleaning a difficult task. But when your bricks are painted, you need to keep your power washer’s pressure at a minimum.

Furthermore, to lessen the need to clean and restore your home structures that are made from bricks, extra protection to reduce wear and tear is necessary. Though bricks are sturdy and they can withstand a lot of weight and pressure, marks can still be made on their surfaces. So, when you have outdoor dining sets or recliners on top of a brick floor, make sure that you don’t drag them.

Bamboo vs Cotton Bed Sheets

Cotton

The cotton farming doesn’t utilize any harmful pesticides, synthetic fertilizers and other chemicals or dangerous that can harm your health. Cotton is widely known as a renewable source. Thus, harmful elements are not used that could damage the soil. When it comes to high quality fiber, it also hits the list. Fibers are stronger and softer since they’re not broken down with chemical processing.

If not exposed to dwindling chemicals, cottons will last for a longer period of time and of course, with proper care. Bringing comfort is one of the benefits that cotton fiber gives. This is very comfortable to touch, which will give people a comfortable feeling knowing that harmful chemicals aren’t touching the skin as well as no damage to the environment.

Such example of cotton fiber is the Egyptian cotton sheets. They are suggested to be some of the best available in the market. These cottons are known for having additional long fibers and these fibers can produce thinner thread, mainly because of its added length. Threads that are thinner can create higher thread counts. Softer sheets will be felt if the thread count is higher. With high thread counts, the cotton sheets will last longer and will be more durable. However, the life of cotton also depends on the care you give.

Bamboo

Bamboo is one of the most wonderful plants our world has and when you get a bamboo sheet set, you’ll know the reason why. Its properties are very luxurious as compared to silk but more lightweight and soft than cotton. They are considered as the most clean, soft and comfortable sheets you will ever use. These will make you turn away from cotton.

Ultra-soft, very breathable and highly absorbent – that makes bamboo bedding both practical and luxurious to every homeowner. Aside from that, they are resistant to mildew, bacteria, mold and odor even after multiple washings. The sheets are also hypo-allergenic. Unlike other bed sheets, bamboo doesn’t wrinkle and doesn’t demand special care. It is machine washable in warm water. Fabric softeners aren’t recommended or needed.

What’s more is that bamboo sheet set is colorfast and exquisitely accepts natural and organic dyes. Above all, being a renewable source makes it the top choice of individuals as it is environmentally friendly. Fungicides and pesticides are not used in the developing of bamboo because it is occasionally infested by pathogens or eaten by insects.

With that being said, based on the feedback of people and obvious features of bamboo and cotton, bamboo bedding is the most sought after fiber being used worldwide. Not only it is cost efficient and gives several benefits that a person needs to have a good night sleep but also includes health benefits for children and even adults, especially those with skin allergies or respiratory problems. The bamboo bed sheets provide enough comfort that you need for a total relaxation of mind and body throughout the entire night.

Bamboo has been tested in comparison with cotton and it gets through as durable, which is perfect for prolonged existence in household linens and clothing, as well as includes better absorption properties and moisture wicking, which is ideal to keep you cool. Bamboo sheet sets are made from one hundred percent bamboo fiber, much softer than high thread count cotton sheets. They create a soft bedding, which is very durable and resistant to shrinkage and pilling.

From the perspective of many designers, bamboo is an excellent fabric option. It’s a strong, light fabric that needs less dye than cotton. Aside from being bamboo queen sheets, they are also used for towels, socks, clothing and just about anything you may think of.

The cost of bamboo bed sheets may rise to your mind after reading its benefits. Maybe you are expecting them to be most costly than regular cotton sheets. When you look at the actual price of cotton and bamboo, you will find that they are very close alike. Bamboo queen sheets are among the most in-demand for many homeowners. At a quite small amount of money, you can get one or even more set for you and your family. These may also include bamboo pillow case set.

Definition of Procrastination

The definition fits perfectly for all the things we say we will do later on. We will mow the lawn later on, we will wash up later on, we will visit a friend later on, all with the express purpose of delay. This is a problem for us, because when we delay, when we put something off, we are in the awkward position of loading our agendas later on with more tasks that need doing.

Let’s take the example of the lawn. We delay it, and put it off till the weekend. The grass will get longer and the lawn will take longer to mow, it might be difficult to mow as the lawnmower cannot cope with the longer grass, you need to take extra trips to the compost heap, but here is the problem. One Friday night, Jill and Jeff called and invite you over for a BBQ all day Saturday, and you already have dinner plans with the in laws on Sunday. Now there is a rush to try to get the lawn mowed and visit all these other folks.

Arriving at either event after mowing a lawn is going to leave you drained and you won’t enjoy it quite as much.

To define procrastination is to define our delay in doing things. Whether you are doing the lawn or doing the paperwork, or just planning your goals – they cannot be delayed. Do them NOW – even just a short 5 minutes on an item, put something back in the cupboard or look at some letters, each will cut the delay and improve your mood.

Have the weight of those “things to do” on your mind constantly will leave you with a disorganised mind and crowded thoughts. This is not the way to experience this amazing world in all its beauty. You are here to experience it in all its bright colours, it’s amazing smells and to feel every moment – So how can you when you always have the burden of procrastination on your mind!

Trendy Features for New Construction Home

Home automation

Today’s home convenience has become somewhat synonymous to single device control. Over the past years, we have seen the surfacing of multiple controls over home appliances with references to security, temperature, entertainment, electronics, and lighting. With the popularity of handheld devices such as smart phones, the capability to control them becomes available in a single device. Imagine the comfort that home owners would get with controlling about 80 appliances through their smart phones.

Green Living

Environmental awareness has reached the desks of home developers. Designs have become more concerned with allowing natural air to pass through windows to minimize the job of air conditioning systems. Several design options are also available to home owners to allow natural light to illuminate surfaces reducing the use of lighting systems. When it comes to the splash of color on surfaces, a popular greener choice would be the use of zero VOC and odorless paints. Home owners can also grab the opportunity of using recycled construction materials such as flooring tiles and wall panels.

Open Kitchen Designs

Many home developers are starting to see the refreshing appeal that open areas bring into a house. One implementation of such idea is the introduction of outdoor kitchens. Imagine the comfort that the cool wind can bring while you are cooking your favorite dishes. Top it up with the added convenience of getting the freshest ingredients right from your own vegetable garden. Various methods have become available to impose this. From the simplest way of having an outdoor grill for your meat and fish to complex built-in cook tops located just near the covered decks or patio. Designs of outside kitchens are more elevated to lessen the times an individual has to bend while preparing and cooking the dishes.

Save Water at Home

Wash your car at a car wash

Do you feel like washing the car on your day off? In the event you do make sure you use a sponge, a bucket and a hose with a nozzle. If you decide the idea of a dirty car is unfathomable limit washing to once a month. However, if you are looking maximize the saving go to a car wash as car washers are mandated to use recycled water.

Use your toilet for human activities and not trash

In many correctional facilities low flow toilets will clog as added water flow is needed to push contraband through its pipes. For those of us not incarcerated putting our trash in the can, and not wasting the 1.6 gallons per toilet flush, the trash can will do fine. Especially for lighter forms of paper, namely, tissue and toilet paper.

Limit your showers to 5 minutes

You are not going to get much cleaner after the first few rinse cycles. A timer goes a long way in preventing losing track of time. Instead of using a few added minutes of shower time to wake the first thing in the morning why not try a cup of coffee?

While brushing your teeth turn off the water except when you are rinsing off your toothbrush

What good does flowing the potable water down the drain while you floss and brush your teeth? The water is really needed to rinse off after finishing. Turning off the faucet will only take a second or so.

Wash laundry only when there are enough clothes to support a full load

The washing machine will use the same amount of water regardless of whether it is full or empty. The problem is the additional washes when added up over time can lead to a large amount of unnecessary water use.

Consider installing a Laundry to Landscape system

Until grey water systems become commonplace in our homes, and eventually they will be we will need to show a little leadership on this one. Green Water Action can provide you with all the required resources to use the water from your laundry your vegetable trees.

If you enjoy landscaping, consider using native plants

There are native plants designed to grow in specific areas. Find out what is considered native for your neighborhood.

Try to limit the time the shower runs while warming up to a comfortable temperature.

Many water heaters take a moment to warm up to where steam is coming out of the shower. This water simply goes down the drain. At two gallons per minute a few minutes of waiting for the water to warm can lead to water wastage. Think of it this way, after the initial shock of the cold water it should all good.

Save Space in Your Home

Utility Room

Struggling to dry clothes during the winter months? Considering a tumble dryer but concerned that you do not have the space in your utility room? Did you know there are steps you can take to ensure you’re able to benefit from the drying power of a tumble dryer without losing valuable space?

One of the best ways to utilise the space when bringing a tumble dryer into the home is to stack it on top of the washing machine. To do this we recommend using a stacking kit.

NB: Failure to use a stacking kit has the potential to cause accidents, such as the top appliance falling over when the door is pulled open.

Universal stacking kits are quick and easy to install, enabling you to safely and securely stack your tumble dryer on top of your washing machine. The majority of stacking kits are suitable to be used with appliances which are 60cm by 60cm, although we recommend checking the dimensions before purchasing.

Along with enabling you to securely stack your tumble dryer on top of your washing machine, the Wpro Universal Stacking Kit can be purchased with a slide out shelf, making it easier for you to unload your laundry from your washing machine and into your tumble dryer.

Kitchen

During the festive period, there’s a good chance you’ll have struggled for space in your fridge. Depending on the size of your household, you may also struggle for space following a big shop.

In such situations, instead of attempting to cram stuff into the fridge, consider purchasing a universal wine rack shelf. This will enable you to chill your wine bottles, without taking up valuable shelf space, which can be used for other food.

There are a number of wine rack shelves available for your fridge, ranging from the Electrolux Universal Bottle and Wine Rack Shelf, which simply slides onto one of your existing fridge shelves and can hold up to three bottles of wine

If you’re after a shelf which can hold more bottles, consider the Samsung universal wine rack. This again, slides onto existing fridge shelves and can hold up to four bottles of wine, freeing up vital space within your fridge.

You can further free space within your kitchen, by mounting your microwave on the wall, instead of having it sitting on the worktop; with the aid of Wellco’s microwave oven wall bracket. These particular brackets are easy to install, and can support a maximum load of 20kg; making them suitable not only for microwaves but other small kitchen appliances too.

Lounge

As televisions get bigger, finding a suitable TV unit which fits in with your decor can often be difficult. It can also be hard to find a TV unit which doesn’t take up too much space. For those who are concerned about the space available and how they’ll fit their TV of choice in, wall mounted brackets may be the ideal solution.

Suitable for 25 inch television sets through to sets which exceed 60 inches, a TV wall bracket will help you save space in your lounge, or bedroom, by allowing you to secure your TV to the wall, without ruining the decor.

With careful planning, and by using the various space saving accessories available, there’s no reason why you cannot make the most out of your household appliances and the space available to you – with little outlay.

Residential Architecture

As you go through the design process, your architect will present a variety of drawings to you, to present the design options. Some of these may make more sense to you than others, so here’s a quick overview of the major drawing categories.

  • Plans – This is likely the most familiar drawing, as it presents a horizontal “map” of the spaces. Conceptually, imagine taking a building and slicing it right at about waist height, then looking down; that is what a Floor Plan is meant to show. A Reflected Ceiling Plan, on the other hand, imagines that the floor is covered with mirrors, so instead of looking down you’re really looking up to see the ceiling features. One other plan type is the Site Plan, which shows the property and locates the new features, often demonstrating that Zoning rules such as a minimum setback or yard depth is being met.
  • Elevations – An elevation is close to what the building will actually look like, since it doesn’t involve any conceptual slicing. Rather, it shows the building in a vertical plane, as though you were standing far away and viewing it with a telescope (in other words, without any distortion caused by perspective). In the real world, of course, we always view things in perspective, meaning that elements closer to us appear bigger than elements further away. Exterior Elevations show the outside of the building, while Interior Elevations show a limited portion of the interior (such as one wall of a living room where the fireplace sits).
  • Sections – Section drawings are somewhat like x-rays of a building, intended to show what is going on within the hidden spaces. Similar to how Plans are drawn by imagining a slicing of the building horizontally, Sections imagine a slice (usually vertical) happening wherever their “cut line” is, as represented on a Plan or Elevation. A Building Section will extend the cut line all the way across the building and show the entire width of it, whereas a Wall Section just cuts across a single wall to show how that wall is built.
  • Details – Details can usually fit into one of the above categories (Plans, Elevations, Sections) but they tend to show only a limited condition, at an enlarged scale so that more specific information can be presented.
  • Schedules (drawings) – While not as common for residential drawings sets, sometimes Schedules may be used to present information. In this sense, a Schedule has nothing to do with time, but rather it is a table or spreadsheet that lists a number of similar items. For instance, a Door Schedule will list each door and describe its qualities, such as what kind of hardware it will use, or its size. By doing so, this information does not have to appear on the other drawings. A Room Finish Schedule will describe the finish materials used on each wall, ceiling, and floor surface.
  • Schedules (construction) – Your architect will use the time or calendar sense of the term Schedule when discussing project timeframes, and will be able to work backwards from your targeted completion date to determine when the various phases of the Design Process (see below) need to be complete. If your architect also provides Construction Management services, then a more detailed Construction Schedule can be developed as well.
  • Renderings – This refers to a more artistic image which attempts to show the building as it will be experienced, often in 3D perspective and full color. As a non-technical drawing, it is of lesser value to your builder, but it will probably be the best way for you to envision the space. Renderings take time to produce, though, so ask your architect if you want to see one. In addition to static renderings, with computers a “fly-by” can be produced, which is a short video in which the camera moves around or through the building.

There are many phases to the design process, during which the expectations for the drawings presented will vary. You may be familiar with the notion of an architect sketching out some concept on a napkin while talking at a deli, but in the real world it takes a lot more detail than that before something gets built.

  • Master Planning – While not as common for residential architectural projects, this refers to a process of using estimated building sizes and other assumptions to lay out a guiding plan, usually for an entire site onto which multiple projects are going to be built. Because it is concerned with general configurations, buildings or rooms may be represented by single-line boundaries, and may not include doors and windows. The amount of detail is arbitrary, as too much detail can hinder the process at this stage.
  • Programming – This refers to a process of documenting how you will be using the spaces provided and what your spatial needs are. For residential projects, this is usually a thorough interview between you and your architect at the outset of the project.
  • Schematic Design – During this phase, the general shape of spaces is determined, often with multiple options for your consideration. The building will be shown in greater detail, with wall thicknesses and doors and windows, but not quite as much detail as the contractor will require. The drawings developed during this phase are intended to facilitate decision-making.
  • Existing Conditions and Field Measurement – If your project involves modifications to an existing building, then before any other design development can occur, the existing building must be documented. This means time spent with a camera and tape measure, followed by time in the office drawing up what was measured. Accuracy here can mean fewer problems during construction, and your architect might need to do additional measurements later in the project when considering how to resolve specific construction details.
  • Construction Documents – Often referred to just as “CD’s”, these are the fully detailed drawings that your builder will use, and actually act as part of a legal instrument. These will include plenty of specific notes and dimensions, so much in fact that they may be hard to read. That is why it is best to have design decisions made prior to engaging in the CD phase. Construction Documents may also include Specifications, either within the drawing set, or issued as a separate book.
  • Permit Submission – Usually, once the CD set is done, it is submitted to the local building department in order to receive a permit. Depending on the project scope, it might also need Zoning approval. In both cases, the drawings are reviewed by the authority and either approved or rejected, with revisions requested. A Zoning submission can be done earlier in the process, since the full set of CD’s is usually not required – the Schematic Design versions of many drawings will suffice.

While there are potentially many more terms that could use explanation, here are just a few that may be helpful.

  • Massing – this refers to overall major shapes and their configurations. It ignores finishes and fenestration.
  • Finishes – the exposed surface materials on the completed building, such as carpet for a floor.
  • Fenestration – openings in walls such as windows and doors.
  • Roof Pitch – the steepness of a roof, measured in terms of inches gained vertically over 12 inches of horizontal run. It is not an angular measurement.
  • CMU – “concrete masonry unit”, or what is often called “cinder block” because at one time cinders were used as an aggregate (but no longer).
  • Rebar – Reinforcing Bars, used within poured concrete walls and slabs to strengthen them.
  • Casework – basically cabinetry, built to fit the space, which may include features like a desk.
  • Rafter, Truss, Joist, Beam, Column – these are terms for different kinds of structural elements that act in different ways. As such, they are not interchangeable.
  • Heavy Timber – wood members of a large cross-section that are usually intended to be left exposed, used for their rustic character.
  • Topography – the shape of the land, usually denoted by contour lines which could be thought of as wedding-cake layers cut at some regular vertical interval.

Installing A Sump Pump

  • Prevents Damage from Flooding – It is a great device if your house is in a region which is prone to heavy rains. It can help prevent your home from water damage due to flooding and humidity, especially the basement. It also saves you from huge financial losses that water can cause. It ensures that every space and room below the ground level remain dry and warm by eliminating dampness and humidity. Installing a sump pump is a convenient and low-cost solution to remove accumulated water from your home. It will also keep your personal belongings from getting damaged.
  • Reduces the growth of mold/mildew – A damp and moist basement helps in the development of mold. By preventing water from accumulating in the basement you can prevent mold and mildew from growing. This not only helps in protecting your house from any damage, but also protects the health of your family members.
  • Reduces the risk of Fire – Electric fires are common in flooded areas. You can prevent electrocution and electrical fires by installing a sump pump.
  • Increases the value of your Home – If your basement other lower areas remain dry, the foundation of your home will remain structurally sound. This will help in increasing the value of your home considerably.

Some sump pumps are powered by electricity, while others are water-powered. The number of pumps you need to install in your home will depend on the size of your home. Sump pump installation is a complex task, therefore it is never recommended to install it on your own. It is best to hire a plumber for this task. It is important to make sure that you hire a professional and skilled plumber for this task.

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